Virgilio Almario, also known as Rio Alma, is a poet, literary historian and critic, who has revived and reinvented traditional Filipino poetic forms, even as he championed modernist poetics.
In a writing career that spans for more than 34 years, he has published 12 books of poetry, which include “Makinasyon and Peregrinasyon,” and the trilogy “Doktrinang Anakpawis, Mga Retrato at Rekwerdo” and “Muli, Sa Kandungan ng Lupa.” In these works, his poetic voice soared from the lyrical, satirical to the epic; from the dramatic to the incantatory. It is evident in these that he is the country's premier poet writing in Filipino.
Almario made a mark in Philippine children's literature when he established the Children's Communication Center, which publishes the pioneering Aklat Adarna series. He has also written stories for children and directed children's illustrators.
He has been a constant presence as well in national writing workshops and galvanizes member writers as chairman emeritus of the Unyon ng mga Manunulat sa Pilipinas or UMPIL. He also founded the Linangan sa Imahen, Retorika at Arte or LIRA and Galian sa Arte at Tula or GAT.
He became the Executive Director of National Commission for Culture and the Arts from 1998 - 2001. At present, he is the Dean of the College of Libral Arts at the University of the Philippines.